Project 365+1: Creating Value 2

Let me just say that despite the time constraints, I enjoyed today’s workshop. Getting other entrepreneur’s opinions is invaluable. At the same time, the fact that I build my confidence in the process is very helpful in the long run. It helps being self-conscious to be able to notice things about myself that I should improve – business-wise. 🙂

Project 365+1: Perspectives


Through a mirror or not? In layers or not?

Despite the lack of sleep today, I had to sit down to do some real work. Quite surprisingly, it didn’t require too much effort to focus myself. It probably comes naturally when you’re passionate about what you’re working on. Because I had to approach this particular thing from different angles, I had to distance myself from it. Sometimes, distance is necessary, even if it’s hard, to grow and to approach something with a new perspective. The reward when you figured it out? A fulfilled and energized feeling enough to last me the rest of the long boring day.

Project 365+1: Creating Value

20120116-205623.jpg As some of you already know, I got accepted at the Entrepreneur’s Toolkit Workshops. The first session was scheduled today. There were about 30 applicants who got chosen. As expected, each one brought in their unique ideas. The session was very beneficial in a way that you get different perspectives about your idea or startup from other entrepreneurs and the incredible facilitator. Looking forward to the next two! (Gotta do my assignment :P).

Got in the Entrepreneur’s Toolkit Workshop!

Last month, I tried my luck by submitting an application for the Entrepreneur’s Toolkit Workshops at MaRS. The workshops would be in preparation for the Up Start! Competition which I also planned to join later on. I knew that I wanted to join and benefit from the workshops the moment MaRS announced the call for application. I didn’t know if I would be accepted as the spots were limited. I just knew that I have a strong idea and business model. It would be a shame not to at least try. After all, these workshops are valued at $500+. If I got in, I’d be able to attend for free, get valuable advice from experienced mentors, network with other entrepreneurs and help me in preparing not just for the big thing itself but for other future endeavours.

Good thing, in working with my idea and business model, I had jotted down some notes and had read quite a lot of articles which helped me frame my proposal strategically. It didn’t take me that long to come up with my 5-sentence application. What took me a long time was in deciding what specific information should I actually include. What MaRS was asking were the following: the entrepreneur’s name, business’s name and the description of the business. Easy? Sounded like it was. But I had to consider that on the day they announced it alone, more than a hundred participants were present and hundreds more were watching the webcast across Ontario and maybe even Canada. I had to come up with a strong paragraph that would catch the reviewer’s attention. I didn’t have an idea how many would apply, but if I would “compete”, I gotta do it right to “win”. That thought aligned with what I usually tell myself: If I’m going to do it, I have to do it well.

For my application, I thought about the possible information that they would want to know other than the idea alone. I knew they wanted to invest on something with obvious “potential”. So definitely the how-I-came-up-with-the-idea-story some entrepreneurs revert to was not relevant. After mentally going through what I have, I decided that the following information would be enough to help them evaluate my application:

– What type of business it is

– For whom

– How it will work

– How it differs from other known competitors (e.g. business model)

I instantly knew, after writing my application, that including the above information would secure me some spot. I was right. On December 16th, I got an e-mail in the evening letting me know that I got accepted. After double checking my schedule, I immediately RSVP’d and paid the deposit.

Below are the workshop details:

Part 1: Designing a Value Proposition

Part 2: Designing a Business Model

*I already have a model but I’m still excited to know any other options

Part 3: Perfecting Your Pitch

Now I’m really excited! 🙂